Morning everyone, I’m sure you will be happy for me enjoying a weekend of peace and quiet without the humans. The Dreamies Girl was in this morning and has left the radio on low for me. The flat is warm, the sun is out and I am a very happy cat.
I understand Bozzie has gone off to Scottishland where he will be joined by thousands of other people at COP26 where they are all pretending to be green. Hundreds have flown in using their private jets and because there isn’t enough room at Glasgow airport once they have disgorged their passengers they fly on to Prestwick to park. Sniffer Joe has arrived with his 85 cars but he has come from Rome via East Anglia. But he flew into Edinburgh and will be driving from there because he is staying in nice green Turnberry, not rat-infested Glasgow. Prince Charles is going to be there with his 124 staff members. I hear that when old jug ears travels he takes his own bed and toilet seat with him!
I had to laugh when I saw the queues at Euston station last night. Thousands of people milling around because trains on the West Coast Main Line had ground to a halt when trees fell on the track and brought down the overhead power cables. Many tried to head over to Kings Cross and use the East Coast Main Line to Edinburgh and then the local service to Glasgow. But they were out of luck as falling trees had brought down power lines near Peterborough. Of course, the Greens shouted ‘climate change’ ignoring the simple fact that trees come down every year in autumn storms. It seems that some trains did get running via Northampton 5 hours later but many attendees at COP didn’t get a train until this morning.
An interesting announcement from JCB. They have contracted with an Australian company to buy thousands of tonnes of ‘green’ hydrogen over the next decade with the aim of setting up a hydrogen sales and distribution business. They have spotted a gap in the business world and are sensibly looking to exploit it. JCB have been spending a lot of money developing hydrogen-powered building equipment realising that batteries just don’t cut the mustard for big vehicles. But they have realised there is a lack of hydrogen infrastructure in this country and what was the point of selling hydrogen-powered diggers and backhoes if the owners couldn’t buy hydrogen! So they have decided to distribute and sell it themselves. Good luck to them.
It seems that Scottishland plane spotters have been having a field day with all the unusual aircraft landing at Glasgow, Prestwick and Edinburgh. Planes have been flying in delegates, bodyguards, support staff and motor vehicles from all over the world. It was not just Airforce One arriving from the States, Sniffers baby transport plane a C40, also landed in Glasgow as did an RAF Puma helicopter, a Bolivian Air Force Dassault Falcon 900EX and a Japanese Government Boeing 777. At Edinburgh, a Ukrainian Government Antonov-148-100B landed as did a Russian Government Dassault Falcon 7X. Prestwick seems to have a wide mixture of planes as well, seeing a State of Kuwait Boeing 737-900, a Cyprus Airways Airbus A319, a Vietnam Airlines Boeing 787 and a Qatar Airways Airbus A340.
I have been reading about a family in Rutland who have attempted to do exactly what the government wants and have installed a heat pump in their home. The 4 bedroom detached house in the village of North Luffenham has done what the government wants us to do and installed underfloor heating power where they could and huge radiators elsewhere all warmed by a ground source heat pump. Under the ‘renewable heat incentive scheme’ they have been able to claim £70,000 in grants. The giant heat pump has a room of its own and there is about a mile of piping buried 5 feet under their huge back garden. The pump cost £30,000, the triple glazing in the kitchen extension cost another £10,000 while double glazing the rest of the house cost £20,000. Now the problem seems to be that this system is totally incapable of maintaining a reasonable temperature in the house and the ten-year-old daughter has taken to permanently wearing her coat. If they want a bath or a shower they have to boost the hot water temperature by using an immersion heater. Interestingly it seems to have saved the family absolutely nothing in operating costs as the electric power needed comes to some £350 a month.
It seems that Sky have had a bit of a problem this weekend with a number of its older Sky+ boxes stuck in British Summer Time. While most Sky+ boxes, Sky Q and Sky Glass switched to GMT in the early hours of Sunday morning it seems TV guides in some of the older models refused to go back an hour with the rest of the country. Sky customers took to the internet yesterday to complain and Sky have said that their engineers are working on the problem but the boxes are actually putting out the correct programmes it is only the guide that is wrong. I can’t remember a time without Sky TV and I have never heard of this problem before. I wonder what went wrong this time?
Well a nice bright morning, but I’m not sure how long it will stay that way as the rumour is that Bozzie and the family are on their way back. Oh well it was lovely while it lasted, but I did rather hope he would stay up in Scottishland for the whole of COP 26.
I read that the Australian Navy wants to acquire a ‘mature’ nuclear submarine. Could this be good news for Britain and the Astute class of submarine? I read that what they want is a design that already exists and has been produced in numbers. This seems to wipe out some of the proposals like using the Astute class body with a US reactor, or an indigenous Australian design with a US reactor. I understand that there are already 5 in service and two more under construction. I also understand that the Astute Class boat is much cheaper than the American offering and there is no spare capacity in the US shipyards. Of course it would be easy to tag extra boats for Australia onto the UK production run, I seem to remember that the production of the last two boats have been slowed down. If this was to be the choice, I would expect early boats to be built in the UK with later hulls constructed in Australia, with ‘drop in’ reactors coming from Rolls Royce.
I was delighted to read that in war games in California British Royal Marine Commandos have whopped the Yanks. It seems the ‘elite’ US forces were forced to surrender only a couple of days into the exercise when the ‘scoreboard’ showed that just about the whole US unit had been rendered dead or, in the case of equipment, destroyed. So that the exercise could continue for the full five days planned the US unit requested the exercise should be reset midway through so that they could complete it. I read the Commandos infiltrated the US rear areas and cause havoc ‘destroying’ the US command and control and high value targets, while the Commando’s artillery decimated the US artillery. Well done our lads.
So we have called Macaroons bluff over fishing and he has backed down and called off his planned sanctions. I wonder whether it was the reaction of the 7,000 French workers involved in processing fish landed in France by British fishermen who stood to lose their jobs, or pressure from the EU who clearly did not support him. Macaroon claimed that the British position had changed allowing further talks, however the British have said that they have not shifted their position one iota.
Are you one of the people who have been trying to buy a Sony PlayStation 5 but found that there are just none to be found anywhere in the country? Well, if that’s you then I have some good news for you. It seems that Sony have answered the call and have flown in a special delivery from its South Korean factory. Sony have pulled out all the stops to get the games machines into Britain for Christmas. They have flown 3 747 freighter loads into Heathrow. Each plane brings in 12 articulated lorry loads of consoles, that’s an awful lot of PS5s.
I see that at long last the Isle of Wight railway start a public service again with the 06:15 from Shanklin. After being out of service for ten months and the eyes of the press on them you would think the train would leave bang on time but for no apparent reason it was 5 minutes late leaving and its journey was cut short causing some passengers to miss the fast cat service to the mainland. Then about 16:30 the service was suspended for two hours due to a trackside fire. The first day back after all that time and the railway didn’t exactly cover itself in glory.
I told you last week about the SpaceX space toilet problem. Well it now emerges that the problem is far more widespread and all three SpaceX capsules are effected. One of the capsules is about to bring the crew onboard the International Space Station – Nasa’s Shane Kimbrough and Megan McArthur, French astronaut Thomas Pesquet of the European Space Agency, and Akihiko Hoshide from Japan back to earth. A journey that can take up to 19 hours, so the Astronauts are going to have to rely on special absorbent underwear that is normally used for spacewalks. I think that sounds quite disgusting.
Oh dear, Bozzie is back and he has a good suit on so I guess he is doing PMQ’s this lunchtime. I understand that Herr Stoma is still in quarantine so it going to be that thick common woman on the Labour side. I do hope he can’t restrain himself from taking the Mickey.
With two months still to go to the end of the year I read that we have already received more than double the number of cross channel invaders than the whole of last year. That’s more than 20,000 extra people our taxes are having to support, who are getting free food and accommodation and will be agitating to bring their wives and 10 children over to get a free council house. The statistic I don’t see is how many we sent back.
So the inconvenient fact has emerged that the reason many of the French fishing boats that didn’t get issued with licenses to fish in British waters was that they lied on their applications. The treaty says that EU boats that have habitually fished in British water for the last four years can apply for a license. It seems that the rejected boats have been found out by satellite information that when on the application they claimed to be in British waters they simply were not there. No wonder Macaroon has backed down on his threats, the fisherman have played him for a mug.
I have been reading a report about the 2019 General Election. It seems that the Brexit Party inadvertently saved Labour suffering an even bigger defeat by splitting the Tory vote. The statistics show that somewhere around 30 Labour MP’s only survived because the Brexit Party took part of the Tory vote.
I told you the other day about what you could legally carry on the London Underground and you may remember that one of those was e-scooters. Well, I have learnt that following a fire on a tube train at Parsons Green Station, Transport for London are under pressure to ban e-scooters. Passengers had to abandon the train when a scooter’s battery suddenly burst into fire and continued to burn fiercely when dumped on the platform. I hear that this wasn’t the only time a scooter battery has burst into fire. Back in October a scooter in Stanmore lost property also spontaneously combusted. I seems that scooter batteries are a known problem and tend to get hot when in use, but I doubt that this was the case in either of these incidents. However, I understand that cheap replacement batteries sourced via the internet could be the cause of the problem.
Something strange has been happening with Tesla shares this week. On Monday, Hertz car rentals announced they had started receiving Tesla Model 3. Rumours said Tesla had an order from Hertz for 100,000 cars and consequently Tesla shares took off and the company value shot past $1 trillion. Then on Monday evening Elon Musk announced that they didn’t have a contract with Hertz and even if one was signed it would have no effect on Tesla financial position as demand far outstripped production. Then on Tuesday Hertz said they did in fact have a contract with Tesla for 100,000 cars and deliveries had started. But this did not stop the Tesla share price falling by 7%. I wonder why Musk denied the deal?
Air shows are always a good place for aircraft manufacturers to announce new orders and I hear that Jazeera Airways is expected to announce an order for 30 new planes at the upcoming Dubai airshow. But whether it will be for 30 Airbus A320neo or 30 Boeing 737 MAX 8. The list price for the A320 is $11 million a plane less than the Boeing but no one seems to ever pay the list price for new planes so you can bet the negotiating has been fierce. Personally, I reckon it will go to Airbus who will get the order because Jazeera currently have an all-Airbus fleet.
Morning all, bit grey and not so warm today, I was glad the heating was on in the whole building when I did my after breakfast patrol. The people in the main office were pleased to see me and loads of them said ‘Hello’ and I got a few titbits, including a bit of bacon out of someone’s breakfast roll. Now that’s what I call a successful patrol!
So those Insult Britain lot were out again in central London this morning. This time there were 50 of them sticking themselves to the ground and a police van in Parliament Square. I had to laugh at all the cyclists and people on scooters whizzing through their lines. I rather hoped one of them would get a pedal in the back of the neck. Then I see the dopey police walking between them picking up their rubbish and telling them off for dropping rubbish. They could at least fine them for littering on top of arresting them for obstruction and breaching injunctions.
Someone had a lot of questions to answer at Heathrow’s Terminal Five yesterday. Passengers freshly arrived on a BA flight from Cyprus were directed to a particular luggage carousel and stood there in anticipation. As it always does, the belt jerked into action a couple of minutes before anything appeared through those hang strap things. But the first item out was a box covered in bright blue plastic, followed closely by another, then another. Eventually the whole belt was full of blue boxes going round and round and not a suitcase in sight. Finally, people start looking at the boxes and they realised they all contained frozen sea bream and they were supposed to be on a flight to JFK airport New York. BA realised something had gone badly wrong and sent all the passengers home luggageless, promising to deliver the luggage to them as soon as it was located. I wonder if it was on that flight to New York in place of the fish?
The scollop dredger that the Frogs detained for illegal fishing has been released by them and docked in Shoreham last night. The skipper had appeared in court yesterday morning and the magistrate had set bail at €250,000. However, an immediate appeal cancelled the bail completely. I see the captain of the ship says that all the correct permits and licences were in the ship’s wheelhouse but the Frogs insisted he wasn’t on the EU official list and arrested him making him dump his valuable cargo at sea before escorting him to port. Surely one look at the paperwork would have cleared up everything but that appears to be beyond the Frogs ability.
I see today is Christmas TV advert day with several of the big companies releasing their Christmas specials. Marks & Spencer have Percy Pig being brought to life by a Christmas fairy and in 8 variations he will ‘
explore the M&S food hall. Woke John Lewis have a young alien (a girl I think) experiencing her first Christmas and kissing a black boy. The one that must have cost the most (£6 million I hear) features 16 top British sports personalities including Emma Raducanu, Jack Grelish, Jessica Ennis-Hill, Mason Mount, Katarina Johnson-Thompson, Andrew “Beef” Johnston and Fran Kirby having a snowball fight. Boots have got Jenna Coleman being given a magic bag by her grandma and T K Max have are featuring Laurie, a lad who overcomes his stage fright thanks to a pair of sparkly boots. I’m sure I will get fed up with them all very soon.
Did you hear about Angelo Fregolent who parked his Lancia Fulvia outside his newsagent’s shop in Conegliano, Italy in 1974 and never moved it Angelo is now 94 and has been retired for many years. The very rusty 1961 Lancia Fulvia was still there until recently and had become something of a tourist attraction! But the local council has had it removed. It is currently being restored. When done, it is to be parked outside a school where Angelo and his wife can see it from their retirement flat and watch the tourists taking selfies.
Another hardly believable story this morning. The Reverend Mike Hall had owned a house in Luton for 31 years, but for the past few years it was first rented out and then empty (due to Covid) as he was working in Wales. A neighbour rang him and said did he know there were workmen in the house? As Rev. Hall had not ordered any work to be done he jumped in his car and drove to Luton, only to find his key no longer worked in the lock. The builder said he was doing the work for the new owner and called the new owner’s father who threatened to have the Rev. arrested for trespassing. It seems that someone had got a duplicate driving license from the DVLC, changed the photo on it (to a black man!) and used it as ID to sell the house, open a bank account, get a solicitor to do the paperwork and get the Land Registry to transfer the deeds. Apparently, now that the deeds have been transferred, Rev. Hall is no longer the legal owner of the property and he can only sue the Land Registry for compensation. I wonder if I could scam my way to owning No 10.
Lovely and sunny this morning but it’s cold. I went to wander down the garden and there is a frost on the grass (not Lord Frost!). Bozzie is not very happy, he has been moaning about people giving him rotten advice regarding the MP who had been pocketing thousands. Mind, a big smile came across his face when he heard that the CEO of a Yorkshire County Cricket Club had resigned knocking him off the lead item on the news.
I hear that the BBC has spent £9.8 million on sending pensioners threatening letters, warning them about not having a TV licence, so far this year. What an utter waste of money. I heard someone say that would have paid for 54,000 OAP TV licenses! The intention is to keep sending out letters and the aim is to increase the number going out next year.
The Education Secretary was doing the media round this morning with the intention of promoting his new idea of “teaching” young children about climate change so that they are “aware” of all the awful things that are happening. This isn’t teaching, it is filling their heads with propaganda. It is based on this idea that “climate change” is fixed science and that anyone who challenges it is a “climate denier”. I think the term “denier” has been deliberately chosen to make doubters look bad as it makes people compare it to “Holocaust denier”.
So the RAF is looking to take its four BAe146 aircraft out of service on 31st of March next and are looking at replacing them with 2 commercial business jets. The new planes have to be capable of flying 3,850 miles with a crew of three and 8 passengers with their luggage. The idea is that the Ministry of Defence will own the planes but they will be operated by a third party probably out of RAF Northolt. After two, or possibly three, years they will be transferred to the RAF. As the 146’s are principally used for the Royal Flight I guess the internal fit-out is going to be to a really plush level. Gold toilet anyone?
I read that we have received 3 more F35B’s taking our total fleet to 24. The planes flew non-stop from California to RAF Marham where they will be joining 207 Squadron. Obviously, they don’t have the range to fly all the way from California and we’re accompanied by a Voyager tanker. At the moment we have ordered a total of 48 F35s with six more to be delivered next year and seven in 2023. Supposedly all 48 will be delivered by the end of 2025. The final number of planes is likely to be more as 48 is only enough for 4 squadrons which would equip the 2 aircraft carriers but leave nothing spare for OCU’s or squadron rotation. We could land up buying anything from 80 to 100 planes.
Lots of companies have been showing off their green credentials at COP26. The bus company Wright Bus have been busy demonstrating their electric and hydrogen double and single deckers which seem to have gone well and a hydrogen bin lorry has been a success. But I hear that a demo of a hydrogen train today has been a failure after the train broke down. Instead of a ride on a nice new hydrogen train, delegates were taken on a trip on a 35-year-old electric train!
I had a little chuckle today reading a US senator’s view on why the British Commandos stuffed the US Marines in that exercise I told you about earlier this week. The senator is on the Armed Forces Committee and he blames the wokeness creeping through the upper echelons of the forces. He claims the generals have taken their eye off the ball concentrating too much on demanding that soldiers should be vaccinated against Covid and producing approved reading lists. Personally, I suspect that our troops are better trained and better led. However, I can just imagine what our Commandos would say if they were told they had to give up their copies of Penthouse for some woke book.
Ah, Saturday and my working week is nearly over. It’s a tad warmer than yesterday but still chilly, so I won’t be going out much today. One of the things I love about weekends is that the humans are rarely here and I am left pretty much to do my own thing, I can even sleep on Bozzie’s bed without getting chased off!
I hear that Lockheed Martin have been awarded a contract to upgrade the USAF’s F22 Raptor Stealth interceptor aircraft. The last of these aircraft was delivered in 2012 so they need an update but I was astonished when I heard that the update contract for the 187 aircraft was worth $10.863 billion. It seems that the USAF thinks so much of these planes that they are willing to invest a fortune in updating them. The current technology in these planes is so advanced that the US has refused to export them to even its closest friends like Israel for fear that the Russians or Chinese should learn its secrets.
A bit more on that exercise in California where British Royal Marine Commandos stuffed the US Marines. Apparently, the rules of the war game was there were no rules and thinking outside the box was encouraged. The Commandos popped into town and bought US Marine surplus uniforms and army radio receivers. There also purchased commercial vehicle trackers. Some of them then donned the uniforms and sat in on the US briefings and on the way out fixed the trackers on the US Marines vehicles. Consequently, they knew exactly what the Marines planned to do, where they were and what orders were being passed over the radio. The Marines called foul but the umpires said the Commands hadn’t broken any rules as there weren’t any to break!
Did you ever see the woman who pitched a board game called ‘Destination London’ on Dragons Den? Despite her already having a contract to sell the game through London toy store Hamleys the Dragons refused her the £75,000 she wanted to put the game into production. In fact, one or two of them were quite rude about her when she fluffed some of the financial numbers. Well, I see she now is having the last laugh. In its first year, the game outsold that perennial favourite Monopoly. The game now comes in 31 versions such as ‘Destination New York’ and ‘Destination Rome’ and the woman is worth £96 million and has been awarded the MBE. I bet Peter Rogers is pig sick about missing out on that one.
I hear more about the new ‘cut price’ airline that British Airways are setting up at Gatwick to rival RyanAir, EasyJet and Wizz Air. Having sorted out agreements with pilots, I hear BA have turned their attention to stewards and stewardesses. They have written to cabin crew who were laid off due to Covid and invited them to apply for jobs with the new airline. The hook is that the new airline will be a feeder for staff into the main airline, however unlike the main airline, the new one will not be offering staff stopovers in 5* Hotels. The planes will all operate short return legs from Gatwick and crew will fly 4 or six legs a shift. I understand crew tend to like this as they can return home every day.
I read that when it comes to Christmas dinner the Queen is just like the rest of us, she and the family sit down to a roast turkey dinner. No fancy three bird roast, caviar or goose for her. It seems that she goes for roast turkey, mashed and roast potatoes, stuffing, cranberry sauce, sprouts, carrots and roast parsnips followed by homemade Christmas pudding. Apparently, there are so many members of the family for dinner at Sandringham that they normally have 3 turkeys in the royal dining room and a 4th bird for the children’s nursery. If I was invited I would be disappointed in there being no pigs in blankets.
For all you chocolate lovers I hear that Cadbury are launching a new chocolate bar in the UK. I understand it is to be a Caramel Twirl. What I don’t really know is whether it is Caramel flavoured chocolate or whether it is a traditional Twirl with a solid or runny caramel middle. I think it sounds lovely but human chocolate is poisonous to us cats so I won’t be trying it.
That’s it for the week, I’m off to see if Bozzie’s bedroom door is open so I can get a comfy sleep in before dinner. It’s my lazy day tomorrow so I will be back reporting on Monday.
© WorthingGooner 2021